New user; total duration of schedule lasts into afternoon


#1

Hello everyone,

I’ve had my Rachio for about a month, and it’s working pretty well. I dove headfirst and just set up a flex daily schedule from the beginning. I’ve set up all my zones, created some custom nozzles (0.4 in/hr to match my MP Rotators), looked up my soil type, and started using the script to pull Weather Underground data into a PWS that Rachio sees (using a cron on my Raspberry Pi). So far, so good. The lawn is green except for some dog spots, and doesn’t feel too wet or too dry.

However, I have a lot of zones - 10 zones of turf. With a low rate nozzle, my turf program takes 15 full hours. I have it set to start at 2AM, but even then it waters throughout the entire heat of the day. It would certainly be better if the program would space out the zones across multiple days. Is there any way to accomplish this in a flex daily schedule?


#2

If all of your zones have similar settings, you might be able to force staggered timing by getting the zones’ moisture levels out of sync with each other. One way to do this is to water manually to force a change in moisture balance in specific zones. The zones may not stay out-of-sync forever though since a heavy rain could clamp them all at 110%. I imagine you could also split your turf schedule and add a different non-watering day to each schedule. That way the moisture levels would desynchronize if they ever got into sync again. Admittedly this is all a hack but I don’t know of an elegant way to do it directly.


#3

Is the 15 hours the actual watering time, or do you have wait (soak) time for smart cycle? I have MP rotators on my front lawn, and yes they take longer. If you have wait times, then combine zones into a single schedule so that a different zone is watering during soak times. The zones don’t need to have similar crop and soil attributes when using flex daily.

If you are running a single schedule, you could split your zones into 2 groups and 2 schedules, run one schedule 3 days a week, the other schedule 4 days a week (or maybe odd/even) to avoid having all zones water the same day. Some zones will water a day early because of the skipped days, but it will reduce the max watering time on any day. You can also change the order that you water each zone, if you have some zones you want to avoid watering during midday heat.